More drifters on their way

Here is where you can track the drifters!:

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GOMI drifter report

Just in case you have not been following the drifters we set loose in early July at the GOMI summer workshop this will give you an image of their travel. It is quite an amazing turn around. Earlier ones had continued up the coast of Nova Scotia. To keep up with progress see:


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Drifter tracking

We launched two new drifters in the Bay of Fundy at the GOMI conference at the beginning of July. If you want to see where they are visit:

You will see an update of this map.


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Digby/Islands publishes news

This spring has been exceptionally active for a lot of projects we are working on. The minute one thing ends it seems like they are replaced by another. We continue to focus on partnering with others to get the most efficient use of our Association’s time and resources.

Our focus for the next week is on the Gulf of Maine Institute International Conference for our youth teams at Acadia University in Wolfville and also getting some funds for major signage of the Digby Neck and Islands Eco-tour Map. The upcoming summer edition will have some exciting news to report that will be very positive on a number of achievements. In the meantime enjoy your summer and all that nature has to offer!

To see details of the Spring click on:  spring 2015 issue PDF 3_web

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Middlesex team news

Middlesex Community College Gulf of Maine Institute Team’s Spring 2015 Activities

In March 2015, the Middlesex Community College GOMI team hosted the U.S. mini-conference. It partnered with Mill City Grows in Lowell to sponsor a daylong event called the Urban Growers Gathering, and students helped run the overall event as well as workshops within it.

The guest speaker, Maraleen Manos-Jones, spoke to the GOMI group individually on Friday night and to the Urban Growers Gathering audience on Saturday, explaining about her life’s dedication to the monarch butterfly. Her stories of being one of the first people to ever find where monarch migrated to in Mexico fascinated everyone.

Later in the spring, the Middlesex GOMI team coordinated students from the college to do a Merrimack River Cleanup, working together with the organization Clean River Action. The group also met multiple times to construct two ocean drifters, set to be launched in Newburyport together with Newburyport’s middle school and charter schools’ drifters!

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Balancing Rock Ready for Visitors

Story & Photos by Roger Outhouse

Following the Victoria Day weekend, July 19th was a day to give back to the communities as the Islands Consolidated School Options and Opportunities O2 Class and the Agriculture Class under the guidance of teacher Casie Tidd worked to improve the Balancing Rock Trail and Parking Lot. Municipality of Digby staff were there to work with and help coordinate the youth in making changes to improve the trail. The Bay of Fundy Discovery Centre Association also helped coordinate the event, provided supervision, transported students and provided equipment for the project.

Small drainage areas were installed to reduce flooding along low points, shrubs and flower in the parking lot were pruned, a general clean-up conducted, older signs were removed to make room for the new bilingual ones, and the entire trail was groomed. Two days later the municipal staff returned and installed the twelve new signs and completed other needed repairs.

This world class trail has added thirteen uniquely designed interpretive panels with eight dedicated to individual plant species. The final five are dedicated to Fundy Fisheries Transformed, Basalt and Bogs, Those Mysterious Lichens, and geology of the region. There will be a formal opening in the near future and we hope many are able to attend. Keep watching for announcements! Happy trails to everyone!

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Nock gets drifter presentation by GOMI team

A drifter workshop was given to the 8th grade science students at the Nock on April 27th.  This presentation was lead by one of the Newburyport GOMI high schools students with some back up from John Halloran and John Terry. This was a design workshop wherein students developed on paper their first image of their drifter.

The plan from here is to build prototype drifters and test them in a lab setting for buoyancy, durability, etc. and then design, build, test and launch real drifters (up to 6) off the coast of Cape Anne on June 3.  Upon the launching, students will, in collaboration with NOAA, track, record and analyze, the data being transmitted.

The next step will take place at Summer Workshop 2015 to be held at Acadia University June 30 through July 6.  At Workshop 2015, along with a regular themes, Dr. Anna Redden, Director of the Estuarine Research Centre and Acadia Tidal Energy Institute, will teach a tidal energy module and four teachers from our GOMI place-based education training workshop will be working  on the drifter module.

The pictures were taken by Nock drifter teacher, Mary Kate Allen. Click on image for larger view.

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GOMI student shows the way

11205164_1010991518912837_7569092997499343650_nLauren Healey and an other Newburyporter both placed third in the Massachusetts State Science Fair. She received $100, a biology textbook, and is the alternate for the UMASS-Amherst scholarship! It was a great finish for her history of success at high school science fairs. Now, its time for some outreach!

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Additional thoughts on GOMI mini in Nova Scotia

Report from Roger Outhouse

It was a great conference and we had everyone in our team home by 4:00 pm. The youth were very happy with the whole conference and I believe that is supported by the comments of the leaders. Frances Anderson said it was a fun time for her (and for us). The staff at the school were great and we all owe Wanda Gillis a huge thank you for her efforts and we could not have held the conference without her. Cathy, Scott, Helen and Etheren, it may have taken a bit to finally get the Barrington Mini underway but it was worth the wait! My best to all participants. I’m already testing out the lichen guide!

Click on image for bigger version

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Maritime mini a great success

The four Maritime teams got together for a mini conference on May 1st and 2nd for a wonderful program hosted at Barrington Municipal High School.  The school was most generous in supplying space and food services. Thanks to Helen Goreham for doing all the logistics and program arrangements. The team leaders also helped in doing the preparation so it was a great team effort.

We started off on Friday afternoon with a presentation by lichenologist, Frances Anderson. We had a presentation, hands on experience and a trip on the Barrington High lichen trail. This is one of two trails in Nova Scotia that provide this experience and Barrington was the first. The other was developed by the Digby/Islands team at the Balancing Rock trail on Long Island. YES – two unique trails in Nova Scotia and both developed by GOMI teams. Does anyone know of any other “lichen trails” anywhere?

After a nice spaghetti supper we had presentations of each home teams projects. Each team is developing multiple projects so with four teams we probably have over 30 projects going at any one time. These all have a big impact on the Gulf of Maine and our local communities. We were pleased to welcome back a team from Bear River led by Cruzer Meuse who is the first youth participant (started in 7th grade) who has become a new team leader. We elders tried to refrain from saying “we remember when…”

Saturday morning we had a presentation by Sue Abbott on Piping Plovers, their habitat, and the ongoing programs for their recovery. This was followed by a morning to field trip to a Plover beach to see the birds and their habitat. We saw at least six birds that had returned to the beach. The most memorable was a chick that had been banded at White Point in Nova Scotia, spent the winter in the Bahamas, and had returned here to Barrington. Most of us thought the bird had a better winter than us.

We returned to the high school for lunch and our closing ceremony. GOMI will plant an apple tree at the school as is our customary carbon footprint exchange after all of our conference gatherings.

Click on image for larger version.

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